From the traditional to the virtual: ex-service organizations, advocacy and lobbying in the 21st century

Ryan, Kelvyn, and Earles, Wendy (2014) From the traditional to the virtual: ex-service organizations, advocacy and lobbying in the 21st century. In: International Society for Third-Sector Research Working Paper Series (IX), pp. 1-24. From: ISTR 2014: 11th International Conference of the International Society for Third-Sector Research, 22-25 July 2015, Muenster, Germany.

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The Australian Defence Community (ADC) comprises numerous ex-service organizations (ESOs) and individuals who strive to represent the interests of the members and former members of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and their families. The ADC is a largely ill-defined concept despite the long history of the more traditional ESOs which have a lineage going back 50-100 years. This community has a proud history of advocacy and lobbying. This research follows a qualitative design involving an on-going two-phase process. The first phase seeks to identify the changing composition of the ADC and the evolution of the issues being addressed: and the second explores past and current practices and experiences of organising for advocacy and lobbying. In Phase 1 data was sourced from a retrospective review of the magazine of the Australian Defence Welfare Association (DFWA) 'Camaraderie'; existing published studies of ESOs; and one researcher's lived experiences. For Phase 2, data was sourced from semi-structured interviews with members of ESO advisory bodies supplemented by a small email survey of informants from internet-based groups. The data is being woven together into a descriptive account and a thematic analysis. To date, the research has identified three eras of advocacy and lobbying that encompassed the evolution of the ESO community and their practices from WW1 to the present day: the 'traditional', the 'contemporary' (including 'reconnaissance', 'main body' and 'mop-up') and the 'virtual'. The eras are not in a strict chronological sequence rather they follow the development of the Australian defence capability through the nation's development and involvement in war and conflict and the make-up of the various forces used. Thematically, the research is beginning to identify that 'leadership'; 'organisational agility' and effective 'representation' of the issues that reflect the aspirations of the members of the ADC are the missing ingredients across the ADC in the 21st century.

Item ID: 36896
Item Type: Conference Item (Refereed Research Paper - E1)
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Date Deposited: 30 Apr 2015 03:17
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1607 Social Work > 160702 Counselling, Welfare and Community Services @ 100%
SEO Codes: 81 DEFENCE > 810109 Personnel @ 40%
94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9401 Community Service (excl. Work) > 940107 Comparative Structure and Development of Community Services @ 60%
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